Would You Vacation At The Super Bowl?

This weekend, the final four NFL teams will face off to see who will meet in Super Bowl LII. Despite the decline in TV ratings – which experts attribute more to key markets shifting with team fortunes than perceived lack of patriotism – the Super Bowl remains the most visible & celebrated sporting event of the year.

We live in Minnesota’s Twin Cities of Minneapolis & St. Paul. Our city is hosting the Super Bowl in two weeks. I’ve been (somewhat) involved with the Super Bowl Host Committee work and last year, my wife and I decided it would be fun to skip our Spring Break trip and save the money to ‘staycation’ at this year’s Super Bowl’.

In addition to the game, we will spend some money to enjoy more than a week’s entertainment of shows, exhibitions, and parties in the #BoldNorth. The Twin Cities have a 10-day festival of Super Bowl events planned including a 7-story Ice Palace, amazing concerts (Pink, J-Lo, Chainsmokers, Dave Matthews, Kevin Hart, Ellie Goulding, and Gwen Stefani), and a number of Super Bowl themed events.

Super Bowl Game tickets – purchased on the secondary market – are not cheap, of course. The cheapest tickets typically go for 3-5x their face value (which are reserved for NFL Sponsors and a lottery of season-ticket holders of the teams that are playing in the game). There is no way for the general public to get tickets other than through StubHub.com, TicketCity.com, SeatGeek.com and other ticket resellers.

It’s not just Super Bowl tickets that are getting more expensive. As I noted in this recent post, the price of all kinds of entertainment has grown exponentially against inflation. But – our reasoning went – while the tickets would be expensive, we would not be paying the exorbitant airfare and hotel rates that out-of-towners would be splurging for either. That might cut the cost of this staycation in half.

Our plans are delightfully complicated by the tremendous performance of the hometown Minnesota Vikings. They are playing for a Super Bowl berth this weekend and are in a unique position – to be the first home team to ever play in the Super Bowl in their home stadium. While Super Bowl ticket prices generally decline as you get closer to the game, this year they have shot up +50% as the Vikes have won game after game. Tickets are expected to shoot up another +59% (6-7x face value) if they win their way into the Super Bowl this weekend.

As a result of this potential, my wife and I bought our seats a couple weeks ago – avoiding the run up in prices. At that point, the Vikings were said to have a ~30% chance of making the Big Game. We figured that we needed to buy ahead of the potential of them winning their way into the game – or get priced out of the market.

My son helped us analyze and equalize the potential scenarios by applying some methods from his recent college Statistics class. In the end, we will have either paid way too much or way too little for what the market will finally bear, depending on how the Vikings do. In the end, it is hard to factor in the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see your hometown team play a home game for the Lombardi Trophy.

We’ll definitely be cheering for them this weekend – and regardless of the outcome, looking forward to all of the Super Bowl hoopla we can enjoy over the next two weeks leading up to the game.

Would you go on vacation to the Super Bowl? #SkolVikings #BringItHome

Image Credit: Copyright, Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee

18 thoughts on “Would You Vacation At The Super Bowl?

  1. With all the high prices and markups, I probably wouldnt do it myself. Plus you can watch it all on TV with great coverage. That said, I’m sure it will be interesting to go and see the game and all the production involved especially since its local. Too bad you will have to watch the Eagles instead of the Vikings! Either way, I’m sure it will be a great experience and you will have fun. 🙂

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  2. In full disclosure, I am one of those fans who perceive the NFL’s actions this past year as a total lack of patriotism. Don’t get me wrong, I support the individuals right to protest. I simply disagree with their particular way of displaying their protest. But they have every right to do so, as does the NFL as a business. Fortunately, I also have the right to not spend a penny on the NFL until the protests are done in a different manner, that doesn’t offend my sense of country. That’s just my personal choice, as a fan and citizen. I do hope the NFL eventually grasps the real reason their viewership is actually down.

    OK…with that disclosure out of the way, I’ve been a huge Redskins fan since 2nd grade. My best friend got a new Redskins lunch box, and I thought it was the coolest lunchbox in the entire world and became a Redskin fan! Lol. (Marketing at it’s finest!) Unfortunately, that was the year they lost to the Dolphins in the Super Bowl, but I became a fan for life. It’s always been a bucket list item to go to a Super Bowl game, so heck yeah! Go enjoy the game, if you so desire. Good luck to your Vikings!

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    • I agree on the protest thing. It was a real turn-off for me and I watch much less now. No need to support all these rich players, owners, and advertisers.

      Liked by 1 person

    • As a (former) marketer, I think the NFL handled the flag issue incredibly poorly. There should have been a compromise between the league & the players that allowed them both to find a respectful way to be heard. They really mucked it up!

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      • I totally agree. As a former VP of a Fortune 500 company, I cannot imagine allowing things to get to this point. But enough of the politics! Enjoy the game. Good luck this weekend to your Vikings!

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  3. If I lived in Louisville, would I go to the Derby? Sure, if I could afford it. (I could bide my time, because it will happen every year there.) If I lived in Wimbledon, would I go to final center-court matches? Sure, if I could afford it. (I could bide my time, because it will happen every year there.) If I lived in Minneapolis, would I go to a Super Bowl there? Sure, IF my team were playing in the Super Bowl and I could afford it. Has a city’s home team ever played a Super Bowl in its home stadium? Not yet. Can it happen this year? We’ll know soon. If it works out, will you regret having tickets? Not likely. If it doesn’t work out, will you still have an amazing time? Probably. Can the financial cost be justified by the psychological value of making this “bet” on Vikings? I don’t think so – no statistics course can quantify the “reasons” of the human heart. Well played, Chief! Have a ball!

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    • Funny thing is I thought about waiting to buy the tix in hopes of the prices coming down. Then I realized that would mean I needed to cheer against the Vikings in the playoffs. That wouldn’t do either. I was glad my son showed me a good way to analyze it!

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      • BTW, my grands live in Philly. I’m rooting for Eagles this weekend. Then I can watch New England to crush them in the Super Bowl. Ah, the indignities NY Giants fans have to go through these days for revenge.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Good luck to your Vikings. As a Giant fan, I’m rooting for them. In 2014 when the Super Bowl was in NYC, my wife and I visited Super Bowl Boulevard and took in the sights and sounds for a day. We spoke to many out of towners from Denver and Seattle. I would not want to pay what they paid for travel, hotel, and tickets that year. I do agree it is a once in a lifetime event, but I do enjoy watching it from my couch.

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    • The only other time I’ve been ‘near’ the Super Bowl was the last time it was in Minnesota in 1992. We went to the NFL Experience and a concert, but it was fun to see the whole town energized to host. Just as then, St Paul is building a giant Ice Palace for their Winter Carnival during Super Bowl week.

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  5. Used to think Superbowl would be fun. However, afraid to go to nfl game anymore due to fan violence/ overzealousness. Superbowl would likely be different. World Series game still on bucket list when we can afford that type of luxury with Cubs or A’s playing. Tickets were too expensive for hubby and I to justify in 2016. We are going to minor league baseball all-star game and playoff game in home town. It is a staycation treat. Visited the twin cities last year. You live in a great City to explore, just wish it wasn’t so expensive to travel to (airfare).

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    • We were fortunate enough to ‘check the box’ on the World Series back in 1991 – and got to see our MN Twins take home the title. Tickets were only $45. It sure would be great to see the MN Vikings do the same thing!

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  6. First off, I’m totally with Thom H on the protesting deal, and have despite my love of football, have not turned on a game this season. That said, If I was in your position, of course I would go to the game, and to as many of the extra events as possible! Life is about the EXPERIENCES! And this one is a doozy! ~ Lynn

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